Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Workplace Learning with the School of Biomedical Sciences

"Workplace learning" [WPL] is the preferred generic CSU term to refer to student activities undertaken in authentic workplace settings and covers various terms that are commonly used,  including work integrated learning, professional practice/experience, internships and placements.

Workplace Learning involves four key participants who have different but complementary roles and goals for Workplace Learning:

  • Academics,
  • Workplace supervisors
  • Administrative staff (coordination)
  • Students.

To prepare for the reality of professional practice, Workplace Learning represents a vital and irreplaceable component for a student studying to be a health professional.  As working and learning are interdependent; the student by engaging with work activities learns to think, to act, to reflect and to further learn..  Knowledge creation and application is a shared activity and depends on effective participation of all involved.  It is important that students, as learners, need to be self directed and motivated and that they will benefit from being self aware.

Workplace learning consists of completing relevant agreed learning task(s) that provide learning and practice in actual service settings which include community health centres, medical practices, laboratories, pharmacies, on-road with the Ambulance Service and hospitals. The key function of your workplace learning is to cement the link between knowing facts about your chosen discipline to being capable of applying those facts in authentic practice.

As workplace learning is undertaken in authentic workplace environments, it is important to highlight to both students and supervisors that learning activities undertaken in these environments will be very different to those undertaken in academic settings. WPL supervisors will often have a client load or a case load in addition to supervisory responsibilities, therefore, effective WPL outcomes often require flexibility, adaptability and innovation on the part of both students and supervisors. 

It is only through engagement in professional practice that students can become fully aware of and learn to manage the complexity of professional practice. Despite the acknowledged centrality of WPL to the education of future healthcare professionals, students are often challenged by the stressful, complex, messy and unique nature of many workplaces. CSU has guidelines, policies and procedures in place to try and help minimise any anxiety or concerns about WPL that the student and supervisor may have.  These can be found in the School's Workplace Learning handbook.


The subjects within the School of Biomedical Sciences  which contain a work placement component are:

Bachelor of Clinical Practice (Paramedic)

  • CLS104 Paramedic Community Internship (TBA)
  • CLS203 Internship 1 (160 hours placement)
  • CLS302 Internship 2 (160 hours placement)

Graduate Diploma in Clinical Practice (Paramedics)

Bachelor of Medical Science/Bachelor of Medical Science (Clinical Physiology)

  • BMS237 Integrated Clinical Placement (210 hours placement)

Bachelor of Medical Science (Pathology)

  • BMS237 Integrated Clinical Placement (210 hours placement)
  • BMS351 Integrated Clinical Placement 2 (210 hours placement)

Bachelor of Pharmacy

  • PHM101 Introduction to Pharmacy (21 hours placement)
  • PHM215 Pharmacy Practice 1 (14 hours placement)
  • PHM315 Pharmacy Practice 2 (2 x 70 hours placements)
  • PHM490 Rural Pharmacy Practice (2 x 70 hours placements)

Further Information

Further information for site organisations and students, including copies of the relevant forms for upcoming placements, can be found on the following pages:

Information for Site Supervisors
Information for Students

 Staff Contacts

Clinical ScienceIan Reed [Orange]02
Medical ScienceSharron Sharrock [Wagga]02
ParamedicsJillian Taylor [Bathurst]02
ParamedicsLeslie Giblin [Bathurst]02
PharmacyIan Reed [Orange]02
PharmacySharron Sharrock [Wagga]02

Top of page